15 April 2014

India’s Population Issues and Policies: Professionals’ Perceptions.

India’s Population Issues and Policies: Professionals’ Perceptions.

(Findings from a survey of professionals in the field)

K. Srinivasan1

I. Background to the study.

The perceptions and views of the professionals in any field of human activity are important indicators and many times determinants of the policies and programs implemented in that field. They are both shaped by past activities in the field and also help to shape the future course of activities. The population field is no exception to this rule. Population policies and programs are to be implemented to a large extent taking into account the views and perceptions in this field, especially of professionals, if they have to be sustainable and not face adverse criticisms at a later date from the professionals, if they are implemented rather arbitrarily under some external pressures or because of hastily made international commitments by the governments. Such an approach of assessing the perceptions of professionals in the field of population on the current or perceived future issues on population, past population policies and programs in the country and perceptions about the future in these dimensions have not so far been attempted. The present study is a maiden attempt in this direction and should be viewed as a pilot run that will be followed by more detailed studies not only in the field of population but also in other fields.

The purpose of this study is to assess the perceptions and views of the professionals on India’s population issues, policies and programs and their suggestions for the future. Further we used the web-based information gathering technique, the “Survey Monkey“ to compile the views and perceptions of the professionals in the field, followed by limited personal interviews for the study. The availability of internet facilities with almost all the professionals having now access to email facilities make such surveys not only feasible but also economically viable.

1. Former Director and Senior Professor, International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai and currently National Fellow, Indian Council for Social Science Research (ICSSR) and affiliated to the Madras Institute for Development Studies (MIDS), Chennai.

The author is thankful to Dr. Thirumaal Arumugam , Research Assistant in the project and Mr. T. Kannan, PhD scholar, SRM University , Chennai for assistance in the analysis of data.

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